Today News Online Service
Chandigarh, February 14
After having stayed away from race walking for over two years, Gurpreet Singh seems to have found top form again. And at what age — the 36-year-old Gurpreet was among the oldest in the field in the men’s 50km event at the National Open Race Walking Championships in Ranchi.
Gurpreet won gold in the event with a personal best time of 3 hours, 59 minutes and 42 seconds. The Army man’s time was more than nine minutes outside the Tokyo Olympics qualifying mark. However, his coach Gurdev Singh said that Gurpreet was on the right track considering his improvement in one year.
Last year, Gurpreet had won silver in the same event. Not only did he go one step further this year, Gurpreet also shaved off over 10 minutes from his silver winning timing from last year. He also became the fifth Indian to break the four-hour mark in the 50km event.
Gurpreet returned to race walking in 2018 after sitting out for two years due to migraine. Starting again at the age of 33 was tough but he was motivated from the fact that most top marathon runners and race walkers were over 35, Gurpreet had said last year. “He is dedicated, and the improvement he is showing, he can achieve a lot more even at this age,” said Punjab Institute of Sports’ coach Gurdev, who trains Gurpreet in Patiala.